March 3, 2020
Comcast-owned satellite TV distributor Sky and Disney March 3 announced a new multiyear distribution deal, making Disney’s subscription streaming video platform (Disney+) available for purchase in the United Kingdom and Ireland on Sky Q, to be followed by Sky’s Now TV in the coming months.
Disney+ launches in the U.K., Ireland and other European countries on March 24. Sky Q currently offers direct access to Netflix, in addition to new deals with the BBC, Channel 4, Channel 5 and Warner Media Entertainment.
The agreement between erstwhile competitors Comcast and Disney gives Sky subscribers direct access to Disney+ original series such as “The Mandalorian” and “High School Musical: The Musical, The Series” and “The World According to Jeff Goldblum,” among others.
As the deal also includes first-pay window access to 20th Century Fox movies, including Ford v Ferrari (known as Le Mans ’66 in some international markets) and Terminator: Dark Fate, a Paramount movie for which Fox has international distribution rights.
“We are delighted that Sky is selling the Disney+ service on their platform and, along with our other distribution partners, will deliver exceptional reach at launch,” Kevin Mayer, chairman of Walt Disney direct-to-consumer & international, said in a statement.
Jeremy Darroch, group chief executive at Sky, said the two companies have established a “strong partnership” over three decades.
“This is a great start to what is set to be another stellar year for Sky — in 2020 we’ll launch new channels and genres, start building Sky Studios Elstree and we’ve got brilliant new and returning originals coming too,” Darroch said.